8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
The brain trust of the Superman titles has been working towards this moment. From Brainiac's most recent attacks, from the inhabitants of the bottled shrunken city of Kandor at last regaining full size, to one hundred thousand Kryptonians suddenly dotting Earth's skylines, to a violent rift which causes the Kryptonians to depart in haste and create New Krypton, a world now sharing Earth's planetary orbit except on the opposite side of the sun. It all culminates with the formerly Last Son of Krypton forswearing his allegiance to Earth and taking up with his own on New Krypton.
But that forswearing stuff is only on the surface. Mostly Kal-El intends to keep a wary eye on New Krypton's military leader General Zod and on the more militant factions of New Krypton. And Kal-El also hopes to perhaps, just perhaps, effect a change in his fellow Kryptonian's rigidly elitist mind set. This just may be one of those neverending battles...
Accordingly, the Man of Steel has taken a leave of absence from his regular books SUPERMAN and ACTION COMICS (filling in for him are, respectively, Mon-El and Nightwing & Flamebird). Superman now moves to the SUPERMAN: WORLD OF NEW KRYPTON 12-issued maxi-series, and there's this shift in perception. On New Krypton, Kal-El (no mention of "Clark Kent" anywhere) is only one of thousands of similarly powered denizens, even if he's got the most experience. It's not his super powers which set him apart now. Rather it's his worldview. And his is vastly different from that of his native brothers and sisters.
I like that there's a tension in how Kal-El is regarded by most of the Kandorians, what with his having championed Earth so steadfastly and his more compassionate approach to things. Kryptonian society works on a guild system, and when Kal-El, unhappy with this system, is unwilling to choose a guild in which to belong, the matter is taken out of his hands. He finds himself posted in the Military Guild, in charge of his own unit and directly answerable to General Zod. It's a pretty nifty moment, I thought, when he dons that bleak grey and black uniform and begins to be referred to as Commander El.
Kal demonstrates enough charisma and resolve that he doesn't end up getting walked over - it helps that he punches out one of Non's teeth on his first day on New Krypton. In fact, Kal's leadership is at first grudgingly but then willingly accepted by his squad, the Red Shard. And it's a bit funny to me that Superman has now become the subversive presence as he attempts to introduce his philosophies and beliefs to those he encounters. Meanwhile, Kal and General Zod now come to grips in more subtle ways. The war of will is ongoing between the two, and it's interesting that Zod is hailed as a hero by New Krypton and Kal-El is more or less on this sort of wait and see probation. Writers James Robinson and Greg Rucka make Zod into a more ambivalent, more sympathetic character, still very shady but now we certainly know where he's coming from. General Zod is driven to defend Krypton at any cost. Still, Kal would probably spout that thing about Hell being paved with good intentions.
With so many super-powered beings around, this could very easily have become a nonstop slugfest, but Robinson and Rucka are really good at what they do. And so we get plenty of character interactions and fish-out-of-water predicaments, as well as the writers shedding light on the infrastructure of Kryptonian society. And you get caught up in Kal's life on New Krypton and the adjustments he makes. Class struggle and civil strife rear their heads when the subservient Labor Guild begins to demand more rights commensurate with Kandor City's fresh start. A faction of the Labor Guild becomes belligerent enough that Kal's mettle is soon put to the test. He passes, thanks to a good looking-out from his cousin, Kara Zor-El (a.k.a. Supergirl).
But New Krypton's potential for causing migraines doesn't go unnoticed by the Guardians of Oa who dispatch a trio of Green Lanterns on a fact-finding mission. This somehow dovetails with the pursuit of a Kryptonian fugitive murderer high on Oa's most wanted list. The fallout to this would pit Kal's morality and clemency directly against Zod's unrelentingly aggressive philosophy.
SUPERMAN NEW KRYPTON: Vol. 3 reprints SUPERMAN: WORLD OF NEW KRYPTON #1-5 and "The Criminals of Krypton" story from ACTION COMICS ANNUAL #10. "The Criminals of Krypton," by the way, gives us even more backstory on Zod, Ursa, and, particularly, Non... who now becomes this tragic figure.
Gary Frank's covers are fantastic, as well as Pete Woods's interior art. And here's another cool thing. Down the decades we've gotten an inconsistent look at Kryptonian wardrobe, haven't we? Here, all these different apparels are incorporated, with each style of clothing wear now attributed to a particular guild. John Byrne's austere black design with silver trim, for example, is now regarded as the normal dress code for the Science Guild.
I guess it's a statement of sorts that SUPERMAN: WORLD OF NEW KRYPTON may be the best Superman title currently going, although SUPERMAN and ACTION COMICS are themselves terrific reads. What carries this limited series over the top may be the plucking of the Man of Steel from his comfort zone and into an environment where everyone, on the physical level, is his peer. On this planet of Supermen, we get a clearer understanding of why Superman is perceived as the world's greatest superhero. Kal-El is special not because of his astounding physical abilities, but because of the strength of his convictions and his willingness to make a stand for them. Dude really is the Big Blue Boy Scout.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on March 23, 2010
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
Superman has had a difficult year. After rescuing the lost, miniaturized Kryptonian city of Kandor from the clutches of Brainiac and restoring it to full size, he finds himself surrounded with 100,000 Kryptonians who possess his powers and abilities, but not his high regard for humanity. Before long, tensions rise between the two species until Kandor decides to construct, with the help of some reverse-engineered Brainiac technology, a new planet for themselves--a "New Krypton." Situated on the opposite side of the sun from Earth, the Kryptonians depart, leaving Superman alone and isolated once again. What should Clark Kent do? Join his species, or stay with his adopted home planet?
Superman: New Krypton Volume Three quickly answers this question with an opening of Superman flying to New Krypton to begin a new life there. And a new life it is, as within the span of a few chapters he becomes a commander in Krypton's military guild, encounters and neutralizes several threats, and is even put on trial for treason. In fact, the story marches ahead a touch too quickly, leaving little time to dwell on any awkwardness Kal-El might have felt adapting to Kandor's alien way of life, for quieter moments between him and Supergirl, or any time to depict how Lois and Ma Kent are coping with his absence.
Nevertheless, the story still engages due to its intriguing characters, namely General Zod, and a greater element of danger than what is common in most Superman titles. The Man of Steel is not so super in a world filled with thousands of similar gods, and he is often forced to use his intellect more than his brawn to solve problems (although he still gets into a decent amount of fisticuffs all the same). The tale also ends in a smart cliffhanger that will no doubt entice readers to grab the next volume.
This installment, like its predecessors, is a worthy read. It's not perfect, with a slightly rushed pace and inconsistent art, and some fans might miss the trappings of traditional Superman titles (Lois, Jimmy, the Daily Planet, etc.). But for those who felt the Superman series was growing a little stale, and others who simply want a good tale, this book (along with its first two volumes) comes recommended.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on March 20, 2011
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
Oh yeah, that's more like it!!.
I liked the second volume but this one is the best so far. Is nice to get a good Superman story for a change. The idea of having Kal-El using "Batman" fighting tactics instead brute force to fight worth the book alone.
Anyway, the story and situations get more complicated and the book ends in a "woah!" kind of way. I did enjoy it a lot!.
The art was a bit more consistent here so I gave it one more star for it, however my advise remains... get the paperback instead. Although this book is good it doesn't worth the 4 more bucks charged comparing it with the softcover. There's nohing new in this editon that the paperback doesn't have and the look of it is so average that, if you get it you'll miss the extra money you paid for it.
Good story. Poor edition.
I would enjoy it more if DC would put Superman: Brainiac + New Krypton 1 + New Krypton 2 + New Krypton 3 + New Krypton 4 in one book (or dividing those in two books) and another edition with Last Stand of New Krypton 1 + Last Stand of New Krypton 2 + War of the Supermen.
But that's just me. What do you think?.
on January 31, 2015
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
Volume 3 has the best artwork in the series to date, and the most consistent, and these were my favorite chapters of the story so far (other than the fine Jimmy Olsen prologue in Volume 1), so things are moving in the right direction as I'm concerned. Some have criticized this volume for not having enough action, but I think the story-telling is quite exciting. I really enjoyed Superman / Kal-El adjusting to life on New Krypton, training the Kandorians in their yellow sun powers, keeping an eye on General Zod, and gently trying to show everyone a better way. Perhaps my favorite story is "World of New Krypton" Part Two, where Commander El (Superman) is ordered by General Zod to stop a herd of rampaging though-beasts "by whatever means necessary." His solution is so essentially Clark / Superman: clever, compassionate, efficient, and as non-violent as possible. I'm liking "New Krypton" more and more with each volume.